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Scope for Export-Led Growth in a Large Emerging Economy: Is India Learning by Exporting?

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  • Saleh S. Tabrizy
  • Natalia Trofimenko
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    Abstract

    The ongoing debate of the literature on learning-by-exporting is whether the conspicuously stellar performance of exporters relative to non-exporters can be, at least partially, attributed to the horizonwidening interaction with foreign consumers and learning of cost-efficient and quality enhancing production methods, or whether all of the differential is due to the self-selection of best firms into exporting. This study uses data from the 1998-2008 Prowess Database to examine how firm-level productivity paths differ between firms with varying degrees of exposure to international trade in India, the country to rank third among the most dominant economies by the year 2050. Having used Levinsohn-Petrin measure of total factor productivity and a proxy for labor productivity, we find significant ex-ante differences in productivity between exporters and non-exporters and no difference in the ex-post productivity gains. These findings suggest that even in a large emerging economy with strong absorptive capacity and a significant catch-up potential, learning-by-exporting effects are nonexistent. Rather, self-selection of more productive firms into exporting explains the productivity differential between exporters and non-exporters

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    File URL: http://www.ifw-members.ifw-kiel.de/publications/scope-for-export-led-growth-in-a-large-emerging-economy-is-india-learning-by-exporting-1/kwp-1633.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Kiel Institute for the World Economy in its series Kiel Working Papers with number 1633.

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    Length: 28 pages
    Date of creation: Jul 2010
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:kie:kieliw:1633

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    Related research

    Keywords: trade; total factor productivity; exports; export-led growth; learning by exporting;

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    References

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    1. Joachim Wagner, 2007. "Exports and Productivity ?Comparable Evidence for 14 Countries," LICOS Discussion Papers 19207, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    2. Iacovone, Leonardo & Javorcik, Beata, 2012. "Getting Ready: Preparation for Exporting," CEPR Discussion Papers 8926, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. De Loecker, Jan, 2007. "Do exports generate higher productivity? Evidence from Slovenia," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 69-98, September.
    4. International Study Group on Exports and Productivity (ISGEP), 2008. "Understanding Cross-Country Differences in Exporter Premia: Comparable Evidence for 14 Countries," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 144(4), pages 596-635, December.
    5. Van Biesebroeck, Johannes, 2005. "Exporting raises productivity in sub-Saharan African manufacturing firms," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 373-391, December.
    6. Victor Gomes & Roberto Ellery Jr, 2005. "Perfil das Exportações, Produtividade e Tamanho das Firmas no Brasil," Discussion Papers 1087, Instituto de Pesquisa Econômica Aplicada - IPEA.
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    Cited by:
    1. Priya Ranjan & Jibonayan Raychaudhuri, 2011. "Self-selection vs learning: evidence from Indian exporting firms," Indian Growth and Development Review, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 4(1), pages 22-37, April.

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